Ross leaves PC World behind for Filtered Media

By Phil Sim in Media News on
IDG’s PC World is on the lookout for a new editor, with Nick Ross’ long and colourful career as a technology journalist winding up next month as he becomes the latest hack to flip across into content marketing.
 
Ross will join Filtered Media, the content marketing firm founded by another former technology journalist Mark Jones, in four weeks time.
 
“It’s sad to be leaving journalism, but I’m looking forward to doing something different”, Ross told Influencing.
 
Because as Ross points out, technology journalism has “been my life” for the last 15 years. Ross arrived in Australia from the UK in 2005 to take on the role of editor of PC Authority, before embarking on a number of considerable challenges. These included founding his own digital magazine publishing entity, launching a tech-focused site on the ABC network, taking over the PC World editorship and having a crack at a publishing-tech start-up.
 
And while his new role in content marketing, is certainly another change-up, he doesn’t believe it will be all that different to the work he has been doing at PC World.
 
“What I’ve been doing for the past year and a half, has pretty much been content marketing, SEO optimisation with a bit of journalism mixed in,” he said.
 
“So really I’ll be doing much the same thing, just for private companies.”
 
Ross points out that his most recent job description, shows just how much the world of journalism has changed over the last decade.
 
“A lot of what I do now is marketing content, so as it comes on top of Google,” he said. “A huge proportion of publisher’s traffic these days comes from Google so if you’re going to write a review you’ve also got to know how to get it to the top of Google.”
 
Ross said he was attracted to working at Filtered, in particular, because he felt that CEO Mark Jones “gets the whole media landscape is changing weekly,” and with the gradual decline in the journalism ranks he feels that content marketing can only increase its share of the marketing pie

Not that Ross hasn’t given his best, at trying to do something positive for the publishing sector. For the past couple of years, Ross has been trying to launch a micro-payment start-up called Nanotransactions that would let readers pay tiny amounts based on factors like the amount of time they spent on a site. However, like his journalism career, Nanotransactions is being shelved for the moment.
 
That was result of being “badly let down” by his technical partners that had promised to build out the service, but had failed to get the product to launch.
 
“It was meant to be four weeks of work away from launch in March last year. By October, I was saying to them “where is it”? In the meantime, I’d been offered trials with publications in Australia like the SMH, and one large overseas player, and everyone was “sounds great, show it to us, and we’re interested”.

“But they just never delivered, so I’ve cut them loose and stopped it for now.”
 
Certainly Ross’s career has had its high and lows, probably more so than most. He said he was immensely proud, in the first instance, at reversing declining circulation at PC Authority, the role his journalism played in the battle against video game classification, as well as his epic NBN pieces, which were the centre of so much attention — both good and bad.
 
The bad, of course, were accusations that as a journalist at a public broadcaster, Ross wasn’t fulfilling his role of writing objectively about the project. That turned into a Media Watch controversy that even roped in now-Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. It’s an experience Ross described as “incredibly hurtful”.
 
“I learnt a lot about stress, anxiety and depression when Media Watched lied about that, and it was certainly the biggest low point of my career, and I don’t think I can ever forgive them,” Ross said. “However, I’m glad I was able to leave the ABC with my integrity intact.”
 
Ross hasn’t ruled out a return to journalism at some point down the track, but equally it’s not something he’s giving any active consideration to. He’ll remain at PC World for the next four weeks, where he’ll be focused on getting whoever takes over the position, trained up for the role.

“There aren’t too many reviewers out there with a lot of SEO experience, so the sooner we can get someone on board, the more help I can give them brushing up their skills in that area,” he said.
 
The position involves overseeing IDG’s two B2C mastheads, PC World and Good Gear Guide, with requirements as follows: 
 
  • Proven ability to review technology products.
  • An understanding of SEO and how to create content that is fundamentally justified by the Google-related traffic it brings in.
  • Ability to self-edit and publish grammatically-correct content without any other proof reading.
  • Be able to work with the commercial team, helping generate leads and building industry relationships without compromising editorial integrity.
  • Have a strong relationship with Australian technology industry and PR.
  • Ability to commission and edit third-party-written content.
  • Ability to write separate advertorial and custom content for the publisher and their clients.
  • Have moderate photography skills including editing.
  • Familiarity with Google Analytics.
  • Be able to work with a multimedia-rich Content Management System.

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Crocmedia to cover Super Rugby games

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Crocmedia is now covering the Super Rugby season with the new Super Rugby Live Radio service.

Company CEO/managing director Craig Hutchison said the new service will have subprograms dedicated to the Melbourne Rebels called Rebels Radio and the NSW Waratahs’ “Waratahs Radio”. The teams’ home games will be covered for the season. Crocmedia will also have radio broadcasts of the Wallabies’ domestic Test matches in 2019.

Waratahs Radio is slated to go on-air tomorrow over the Super Radio Network with sports presenter Will McLoy and former Wallabies hooker Adam Freier as hosts. Rebels Radio goes to air on 1 March over at 1377 SEN+.

More redundancies hit BuzzFeed AU

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

More BuzzFeed Australia staff are following former GM/editor Simon Crerar out on redundancy.

The company announced that the next round of redundancies include editor-at-large Jenna Guillaume, social news lead Brad Esposito, senior reporter Josh Taylor, lifestyle producer Michelle Rennex, photo editor Anna Mendoza, lifestyle editor Jemima Skelley, political editor Alice Workman and video producer Nick Arnold.

Both Guillaume and Esposito are the longest-serving employees to be sent home, as they joined BuzzFeed before BuzzFeed Australia was officially launched in 2014.

Despite the development, Guillaume is happy as it gives her time to explore new things. “Here it is: after 5 years, I’m leaving BuzzFeed. I’m sad, but excited about exploring new opportunities. I’ve got my 1st book to launch and my 2nd book to write, and I’m keen to freelance (but also interested in hearing about staff roles!),” she said in a Tweet.

BuzzFeed had previously announced

Gudova in action at CANSTAR

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Finance comparison site CANSTAR has hired Monika Gudova as graduate energy content producer.

She will be tasked to write articles on the energy industry, including material on energy retailers, changes in utility prices, and associated discussions on energy-related laws.

Gudova joined CANSTAR following six months as online content writer at MOZO, where she also handled energy topics as well as home loans.  

Follow Gudova on Twitter @MGudova and on LinkedIn.

Men’s Health taps new fitness director

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Men’s Health Australia has enlisted gym operator Todd Liubinskas as the new fitness director.

His new job will be to produce new video content that will be shared over digital platforms. He will also work on developing projects to firmly educate and inspire people on pursuing a more active lifestyle, while also headlining events featuring the magazine.

Liubinskas is already known in the Sydney fitness scene for running three gyms. He is also a personal trainer and strength and conditioning coach.

“Humble, knowledgeable, and incredibly fit; you wouldn’t expect a bloke of Todd’s status to be so level headed and selfless. But he is, and it’s these characteristics that were the driving force behind his appointment as the newest member of the growing Men’s Health team,” said Men’s Health editor Scott Henderson of Luibinskas.

Stay updated with Luibinskas on Twitter @ToddLuibinskas and on LinkedIn.

Gock off on Perth assignment

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Nine News Albury reporter Kamin Gock is lined up for work in Perth.

Gock will report to Nine News’ Perth bureau starting March 4, 2019 to take on the metro news and current affairs beat. He had been doing regional news with the Albury bureau for the past six months, and previously covered Central West NSW.

Stay updated with Gock on Twitter @KaminGock and on LinkedIn.

InStyle completes facelift

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Fashion magazine InStyle has rolled out a brand-new look for 2019.

Released in newsstands today, InStyle’s March issue sports a new layout based on four important sections – Style, Fashion and features, beauty and The Life, formerly Lifestyle – plus a display font never before seen in Aussie magazines. The online version will also be driven by the new design.

The issue has Aussie comedian and Instagram celebrity Celeste Barber as the cover model. InStyle editor Emily Taylor said the move breaks from the usual trend of featuring fashion models or Aussie Hollywood A-Listers as the present celebrity scene has changed to include upcoming social media darlings.

“I wanted someone on the cover who was perhaps unexpected, yet who was doing something resonating with the Australian market. The more I spoke to people about her, the more I realised they knew who she was. However a lot of people thought she was American because she has such a huge following there,”

BuzzFeed Australia job cut claims boss

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

BuzzFeed Australia’s job cuts have claimed the man who set up the operation Down Under, with general manager Simon Crerar announcing he’d been laid off.

Crerar made the announcement via a Twitter thread that tracked his time at BuzzFeed from his hiring in 2013. He also thanked all of the staff he had worked with over the years.

“I’m so thankful I got to work with so many fab people over the past five years. I’m so proud of what we achieved together. And I’m excited about whatever is next,” he said in one follow-up Tweet.

BuzzFeed’s downsizing plan calls for 15 percent of its entire global staff to be laid off, including 11 out of the 40-strong Australian branch.

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